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In the oil-rich Gulf of Mexico, the wind is blowing toward renewable energy

For many years, the Gulf of Mexico has become a sea of enormous oil platforms. The Biden administration must now install wind turbines in the area. The US Interior Department invited businesses to express interest in leasing a 30-million-acre area off the coasts of Louisiana and Texas as part of a campaign to build 30 gigawatts of the carbon-free offshore wind energy along the US coast by 2030.

It might be a completely new hunt for the Gulf of Mexico, where offshore oil wells date back to the 1930s and today contribute to 15% of US oil production. New spending on wind energy, like in Europe’s North Sea, may be able to compensate for decreased funding for oil megaprojects.

According to the government Bureau of Ocean Power Administration, the oil and gasoline industry “will most surely blaze the way,” adding that some oil majors — all of which are predominantly based in Europe — have set aims for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. TotalEnergies of Royal Dutch Shell and France are two companies that have expressed early interest in a potential bidding round for wind development rights.

Louisiana’s Democratic governor, John Bel Edwards, has stated that his state’s long experience in oil and gas has given it “a strategic advantage in developing offshore wind in the Gulf of Mexico.” By early 2023, the federal government expects to see leasing gross sales in the Gulf.

In the wind improvement queue, however, gulf projects are prone to lag behind projects on the Atlantic as well as Pacific coasts. One goal is to reduce common electrical energy prices in Texas and Louisiana by reducing wind speeds in the gulf. The “estimated value of producing energy from the offshore wind in each GOM website was above the desired income alternatives,” according to a report from the National Renewable Power Laboratory until prices went on to say no.

Then there are hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico. NREL stated that turbine engineering technology had “gaps” in the face of extremely high winds, but that these gaps were not insurmountable. State insurance policies also favor the east and west coastlines of the United States. Republican state officials in Texas, which is an oil and gas powerhouse with the nation’s largest land-based wind industry, have remained largely silent on the idea of wind turbines off the state’s coast. In response to a recommendation that Texas should further embrace its clean-energy potential, Governor Greg Abbott told António Guterres, UN Secretary-General to “pound sand.”

Because Texas has the nation’s largest energy market, getting “a little more on board” would make it a “much more interesting place” for developers, according to Lucas Stavole, who is an analyst at the consultant Wooden Mackenzie. Meanwhile, Japanese states such as New York have established explicit electricity targets and incentives for the growing offshore wind industry, and have accepted tasks.